Former cricketer,TV host and Congress’ Amritsar East MLA Navjot Singh Sidhu , whose victory margin of 42,809 votes is second best to Punjab chief minister-designate Capt Amarinder Singh spoke to TOI’s Rohan Dua on issues ranging from his debut in state cabinet and his current and future role in Punjab.
Your induction into the Congress came 19 days before polls. But you have made a stunning debut with the second highest victory margin?
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First of all, I want to thank my wife, Amritsar Congress workers, Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi, Capt Amarinder and even men like Jasbir Dimpa, who could not get ticket but worked hard for me. I think the entire party worked on development agenda. I don’t think my delayed entry was a problem. There has to be a time for ascendancy. We all saw what happened to AAP. They thought they had peaked, but peaked at the wrong time and on wrong reasons.
How do you look at your contribution to Congress’ spectacular tally of 77 seats?
I held 32 rallies in 32 constituencies and we won 30 of them. So, you can see my strike rateSee, that is for Captain saab and Rahulji to decide. But what I can say is that if I get a role, I will leave everything.
First of all, I need to clear this confusion. The shows are not shot for seven days. I go to Mumbai only once a week, for the rest of the days I am in the national capital.
What are your top priorities after being elected as an MLA?
To bring Punjab back on the path of glory. I want to see that Punjab’s green revolution is back and it can be called granary of India without any signs of farmer distress. I recently finished a book on Punjab’s valour on how men from here have won 269 Param Vishisht Seva Medals, the highest for any state in the country. I want to see a drug-free Punjab without debt burden and whose men can work in defence or find jobs.